Southcoast Education Compact Creates College Guide For Area Students

Dartmouth, MA The SouthCoast Education Compact has created a comprehensive new College Planning Guide to assist high school students, and their parents, in planning for college. The SouthCoast College Planning Guide provides the necessary tools and information to assist parents and their children to look at higher education as a solid option for building a secure future. A formal release of the College Planning Guide was announced today during a press conference held at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

Dartmouth, MA—The SouthCoast Education Compact has created a comprehensive new College Planning Guide to assist high school students, and their parents, in planning for college. The SouthCoast College Planning Guide provides the necessary tools and information to assist parents and their children to look at higher education as a solid option for building a secure future. A formal release of the College Planning Guide was announced today during a press conference held at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. 

The SouthCoast College Planning Guide will be distributed to high school juniors and seniors in the (14) cities and towns that comprise the SouthCoast region. The Guide will also be delivered to homes throughout the region as an insert in the New Bedford Standard-Times and the Fall River Herald News during the week of December 15, 2003. 

“The SouthCoast Education Compact partners believe that investing now in education will help secure the economic future of all citizens in the region,” said UMass Dartmouth Chancellor Jean MacCormack. “We’re pleased to bring this new and comprehensive publication to our community and thank the Compact business and school partners who have helped make it such a valuable resource. We are certain that this Guide will be very helpful to students and parents. It will enable many more students to attend the college or university that best meets their individual needs.” 

The College Planning Guide includes a blend of interesting articles like how to choose high school courses to successfully prepare for college, the benefits of attending technical schools, community colleges or universities, how to navigate the complex world of financial aid, and the importance of community service. 

Also included is a timeline of tasks for high school sophomores, juniors, and seniors to assist them in preparing for their college futures. A broad list of reputable websites will lead parents and students to additional helpful information about colleges and financial aid. 

“For many students and families, access to information about college is limited because they don’t know where to start,” said Lee Blake, Executive Director of the Compact. “This guide makes it easy for students and parents to understand what they need to know in order to find and apply to the right college, as well as how to get financial aid that is available from federal state and local sources,” she added. 

Founded in the late 1990s as an initiative of the SouthCoast CEO Council, the Education Compact is a partnership of SouthCoast business, education and community leaders that are committed to improving the level of educational attainment in the region. The partners pledge to cooperate in implementing a multi-year plan and a variety of high leverage initiatives to ensure that the SouthCoast region will have a workforce competent to compete in a knowledge-based economy. 

Mr. John Day, CEO of SouthCoast Health Systems, Wareham Superintendent Dr. Wayne LaGue and UMass Dartmouth Chancellor MacCormack serve as co-chairs for the Education Compact, and provide organizational leadership. The Compact is located at the University’s main campus in Dartmouth and meets monthly. The University provides staffing and administrative support. 

Several SouthCoast organizations and businesses helped to sponsor the College Planning Guide including Riverside Manufacturing, the Fall River and New Bedford Chambers of Commerce, UMass Dartmouth, Bridgewater State College, Bristol Community College, Cape Cod Community College, Massasoit Community College, the New Bedford Educational Opportunity Center, the Fall River Five Cent Savings Bank, the Diocese of Fall River, Baker Books and the Standard Times. These sponsors allowed the Compact to produce the College Planning Guide and distribute it free to the public. 

The SouthCoast Education Compact works to collectively address and support issues of education reform in the SouthCoast region. The communities involved in the Compact include Fall River, New Bedford, Acushnet, Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Freetown, Lakeville, Rochester, Somerset, Swansea, Wareham, Marion, Mattapoisett, and Westport. 

For more information about the Compact, contact Lee Blake at (508) 999-8545 or lblake@umassd.edu.


News and Public Information